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Beginning a tradition in 1946, concerned Greek-Americans established The American Friends Of The Blind In Greece with their own savings to provide resources and support to the neglected blind in Greece. 


The American Friends of the Blind in Greece works toward a day when blind and severely sight-impaired people in Greece have access to the best possible support and opportunities available to blind people worldwide.


The American Friends of the Blind in Greece is dedicated to improving the lives of Greece’s blind and severely sight- impaired people by identifying, acquiring, and delivering the best possible resources and opportunities available to organizations working to improve the lives of Greece’s blind and severely sight- impaired people.



Bob Adams has served as a board member of the American Friends of the Blind In Greece for more than 20 years. He is currently serving as the organization’s president.  Mr. Adams lives in New York with his family, where he is a business consultant. He serves on the boards of a number of other charitable organizations. 



Jim Adams has served as a board member of the American Friends of the Blind in Greece since 2011. He is the grandson of Andrew Jarvis, one of the founding members. Jim is currently employed by Adlumin in a Global Sales leadership role. He serves as president of The Service Club of Andover, a US-based charitable organization, on the fund-raising committee for Phillips Academy, and is a committee member for the local Boy Scouts in his home town. Jim and his wife and four children live in Andover, MA.

George Andros

George’s education and training were in psychology and education.  He directed three psycho-educational centers that served children and youth with severe emotional and behavioral problems, overseeing their annual budget and hiring and training teachers.  After his tenure there, he continued to serve as a consultant for those organizations.  Also, for many years, he has been active in Greek Orthodox parishes and communities, including serving as parish council president.  He enjoys golf and ballroom dancing, and he and his wife have three children and four grandchildren. 

Lew Brikates

Lew is the secretary for the American Friends of the Blind. He is an attorney employed by the federal government for over 30 years. Lew and his wife, Paula, reside in Fairfax, Virginia and have one daughter.



Tom spent his career in the energy and utility industry working in Houston, Atlanta, and New York City.  He most recently retired as CEO of Dalton Utilities, a multiple service municipal utility in NW Georgia.  He has been involved with non-profit boards for several decades including 

the Salvation Army of Whitfield/Murray/Gordon Counties, Dalton-Whitfield Day Care Center, United Way of NW Georgia and Community Foundation of NW Georgia.  Tom and his wife, Lara, are in the process of moving from Dalton, GA to their retirement lake home in Cumming, GA.



Peter is a retired construction executive from the Washington, DC area. In addition to serving on the Board of the AFBG, Peter also serves as treasurer and House Manager of the non-profit, Washington Metropolitan Orthodox Senior Housing of Bethesda, MD, whose mission is to provide care for orthodox seniors during their years of cognitive decline.

Elizabeth Kalperis

Elizabeth worked on Wall Street for many years in Institutional Equities.  In her retirement, she has worked with numerous organizations in the town of New Canaan, CT, where she has resided for over 20 years.  She has also been very involved with Bates College, her alma mater, participating on a number of committees involving special projects.  Elizabeth’s great uncle, George Podas, was a founding member of American Friends of the Blind and her father, Jim Kalperis, has served on the board for over 62 years.  She currently spends a lot of time traveling with her husband and has been residing part-time in London.



Elias joined American Friends of the Blind in Greece in 2013, accepting an invitation by the board, which he has considered to be an honor for him.  In addition, he is pleased that as a member of the American Friends of the Blind in Greece, he is helping the blind people in his own country.

Elias was an electronic engineer officer of the Hellenic Air Force for 26 years, as well as performing a 2-year NATO assignment in Izmir, Turkey, as well as radar sites, Combat Wings ,and general staff assignments.

Following his retirement from the Hellenic Air Force, he worked for another 26 years as a technical/marketing consultant for General Instrument, Litton, and Northrop Grumman in electronic warfare.

As of February 2010 he has been fully retired, enjoying his life with his lovely family and friends. 


Jim has been a member for 62 years and became involved with this organization at the age of 16, driving five blind boys around New England. He was decorated by Queen Fredericka of Greece for organizing the fund-raising drive involving students of Falmouth High School. Jim served as the secretary / treasurer of the American Friends of the Blind in Greece for 30 years.


Karen has spent her career in English as a Second Language education, first as a university instructor in the US and Japan, and then in various editorial roles at Oxford and Cambridge University Presses. Currently she is editorial director of Disney World of English at World Family English. Her grandfather, Charles M. Filides, was a founding member of American Friends of the Blind in Greece. Karen is honored to work supporting this organization.


John is a neuroscientist who has been working on a visual prosthesis to restore sight to the blind for over a decade.  He runs a research laboratory at Massachusetts General Hospital / Harvard Medical School with funding from national and international institutions, both public and private.  Born in the US to Greek immigrants, he has strong ties with Greece and works to improve and promote scientific research there.  He is honored to serve on the board of AFBG.

Kathy Filides Tsouros

Kathy has been a member of American Friends of the Blind in Greece for over 40 years. She currently resides in Concord NH with husband Ernest and is a member of the Holy Trinity Church. She was the former director of Concord Savings bank and trustee of Concord Hospital, as well as several other non-profit boards in the Concord area throughout the years. Kathy is currently retired.  Her father, Charles M. Filides, was a founding member of American Friends of the Blind in Greece and her family has always been involved in supporting this worthy organization.


Mark is a trial lawyer and director with McLane Middleton based in Manchester, N.H. His practice centers around environmental and commercial litigation. Mark has served on numerous professional committees, as well as local and state non-profit boards. His professional committee work has focused on improving access to justice for those in need. Some of the non-profit boards on which he has worked have focused on providing social services and legal services to the economically disadvantaged, others on improving the environment.


Dimitri began his professional life working for Fidelity Investments and Northwestern Mutual. He made the transition to running and building his family’s business five years later when an opportunity to purchase the business presented itself. With strong ties to the community and a view toward retirement, Dimitri recently sold his business and joined Granite Financial Partners to manage retirement plans and train to become an advisor. Though born in the US, Dimitri’s family moved to Chios, Greece when he was four years old. Upon his return to the US at age 12, Dimitri mastered English and went on to graduate from Colby-Sawyer College with a BS in Business Administration. Dimitri is blessed to have amazing family and community support.

Ipatia "Patty"

Patty's goal to help humanity aligns  with AFBG's mission. She is
honored to serve as a board member of AFBG. Her first career was in
biology, with nearly two decades in cancer research. After she married
and became a homeschooling mother, she transitioned to writing poetry
and novels that take place in Greece. Two of her books have been
translated into Greek. Holding an MFA in Creative Writing and a Ph.D. in
Leadership, she teaches English as an adjunct professor at the
university level. Beyond literature, she is a skilled classical
musician, painter, and founder of the Hellenic Writers' Group of
Washington, D.C.

Michail  Tsatsanis

Michail joined the Board of Directors of American Friends of The Blind (AFBG) in 2024. He lives in Huntington Beach, CA and is supporting AFBG outreach efforts on the West Coast. His interests in volunteering around special needs originated with his son (now an adult) who is on the autism spectrum. He serves on the board of directors of the Orange County Aspergers Support Group and has also worked with at risk youth and foster care kids. Michail holds M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering and has worked for 30 years in academia and industry in the area of wireless communications. Michail is married and is the father of two adult children.

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